Mass music program for an upcoming major conference
  • MarkB
    Posts: 179
    Sunday closing Mass music starts on page 65 of the program linked to below for the Los Angeles Archdiocese Religious Education Congress next month. (Other Mass and prayer service music over the weekend can be found elsewhere in the program.)

    It's a prime example of how not to do music at Mass: the spirit of the age instead of the spirit of the liturgy.

    In particular, note the Tower of Babel character of the Mass's music, and Latin is thrown a (very, very, very small) bone by chanting the Agnus Dei from the Jubilate Deo collection; that's all the Latin in the Mass.

    Many of the songs (from the other services too) have lyrics that could be social justice warrior or wokescold anthems. Again, the spirit of the age instead of the timeless spirit of the liturgy.

    The Eucharistic acclamations are from M. Roger Holland's "The Sound of My People Mass." Besides the inappropriate secular R&B musical style, I think the repetitions of phrases in the acclamations are so numerous as to make the Mass setting almost a parody of itself. (Does any parish actually use that awful setting?) Listen to samples here, especially the "Amen" if you listen to only one sample:

    Also, the responsorial psalm response repeats the same phrase three times in three different languages. Misguided praxis that has no justification and is borne from a desire to be linguistically inclusive (politically correct) as the primary consideration over liturgical or ritual meaningfulness. Spirit of the age.

    So much for avoiding "useless repetitions" in the liturgy, as called for by Vatican II. The irony is that the planners of this travesty of a Mass believe it's a superior model of Vatican II liturgy, and they believe it sets an example for the rest of the country to follow.

    It's almost an example of everything Archbishop Sample said should not be done at Mass in his pastoral letter on sacred music. How far the Church has to go to realize the authentic vision for music at Mass. How far.
  • MarkB
    Posts: 179
    If you want to punish your ears or do research into what the largest archdiocese in the country is doing liturgically, listen to the conference theme song, which was just made available online today:

    On the page, click the play button for the 2019 theme song at the top. They are going to sing that song at Mass and during other prayer services during the conference. Sounds like a teeny bopper number from High School Musical or Glee, complete with autotuned vocals to compensate for the singer/composer's lack of talent. I was in disbelief that something so utterly secular sounding and so repulsively opposite to sacred music would be chosen as the theme song and used at Mass.

    Besides that, it's a song that is obviously meant to showcase a soloist who sings about 90% of the song by herself, relegating the congregation to singing (if they even want to) small bits, and the congregational parts aren't at all intuitive to sing. It's thoroughly a concert piece, not a song for community singing.

    That is what the Archdiocese of Los Angeles believes is exemplary liturgical music. Archbishop Gomez has been a huge disappointment.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,763
    Click on a GIA link? Surely you jest. But anyway that's post-tower of Babel, and why would anyone expect an Archdiocesan event to be other than all-embracing? While I'll take spirit of 1541 over spirit of 1564, I think GBS pretty well summed up the spirit of timelessness.

    If political incorrectness isn't really all it's cracked up to be, some typographical correctness might still be worth fighting for: the 'Closing Song's "I'll go-o-o" seems to be not a salute to Mrs Robinson so much as inexperience with melismata.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 9,828
    I have heard that religious ed congress has been horrid for years. Archbishops seem to come and go and not much changes. Maybe his grace realizes a victory in a war with it would be Pyrrhic at best.
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,009
    220 x 220 - 19K
  • Chaswjd
    Posts: 112
    This perhaps summarized it best:
    Thanked by 2MarkB CharlesW
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,086
    I have heard that religious ed congress has been horrid for years.

    Has it ever been anything but horrid?
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,471
    I'm so frustrated by this! I clicked on the link because we're doing a big Mass for a conference in October, and I thought I could pick up some pointers. Rather than being about "a major conference", it's about La Wreck.